Mr. Paul Kehoe, T.D., Minister with responsibility for Defence has welcomed the outcome of discussions with PDFORRA which will see the extension of service of some 500 Defence Forces personnel who were due to be discharged as a result of reaching the limits of the contracts of service.
The extension provides that line Privates and Corporals recruited post 1994, be allowed to continue in service to 31 December 2022 (or until they reach the age of 50), provided these personnel meet certain criteria during this interim period, including medical grades and fitness tests.
Arising from an adjudication in 2015, the adjudicator recommended that a review be conducted on the service limits for privates and corporals recruited to the Defence Forces post 1 January 1994. This adjudication resulted from a claim from PDFORRA seeking extensions in the service of these personnel to age 50.
Minister Kehoe said, “the review is being subsumed into a broader review of appropriate age profiles of enlisted personnel, as identified in the White Paper on Defence. In this regard I agreed that the personnel referred to in the adjudication be allowed remain in service to end 2022 (or until they reach the age of 50), to allow for this review to be completed. This will allow such personnel to continue in service beyond the timeframe suggested in the adjudication”. The Minister added “for the avoidance of doubt I also directed that the rank of line Privates, which had not been specifically recommended for review in the 2015 adjudication, would be encompassed within this measure”.
The Minister said he was very pleased that following successful negotiations under the Conciliation and Arbitration scheme, PDFORRA agreed to this measure.
A joint civil/military team are tasked with examining service limits for all enlisted personnel ranks and will make recommendations in due course. There will be ongoing engagement with PDFORRA on this matter.